Jubilee Installation
Provincial Grand Master Keith Beardmore took his team to the top of the province for the installation meeting of Jubilee Mark Lodge No 375 at Ulverston Masonic Hall.
Keith Beardmore, Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy and Giles Berkley
The most famous son of the town is Arthur Stanley Jefferson who found fame under his stage name of Stan Laurel with his partner, and notable Freemason, Oliver Hardy.
A statute to the pair outside of the Coronation Hall was unveiled by Ken Dodd in 2010 and it is somewhat de rigueur  for visitors to Ulverston to have a photo taken with the sculpture.
Keith Beardmore, Paul Rose, Brian Benn and Giles Berkley
Outgoing WM Paul Rose MBE was assisted in the ceremony of installation by John Torrance. Between them they successfully installed Brian Benn as the latest incumbent of the principal chair of the lodge.
The Provincial team
Paul and Brian have known each other for some time. When Paul decided to run an air show on Walney island it was Brian he turned to for support. They managed to put on two very successful displays.
Others too were called upon to play their part in the proceedings.
Alan Jones presented the working tools of the degree, Les Preston Jnr delivered the address to the WM, Provincial Senior Warden David Rigby that to the wardens and Russ Greenhow addressed the Overseers as to their responsibilities. Keith was called upon to sing for his upper and orated the address to the Brethren. All added to the enjoyment of the evening.
David Smith, Ray Dickinson, Peter Quirk and John Torrance
To mark the occasion Brian presented Keith with a cheque for £500 in favour of the West Lancashire Mark Charity.
Amongst the spectators were several master’s in office including Graham Dowling of Morecambe, Chris Larder of Garnett, Peter Schofield of Furness and Paul Broadley of Lebanon.
Peter being in possession of the travelling keystone took the opportunity to hand it on to Brian. The new WM has already arranged to travel to Morecambe to ensure the keystone continues its journey round the province.
Paul Broadley, Chris Larder, Graham Dowling and Peter Schofield
The entrance and recession of the provincial team, who had travelled to the northern side of Morecambe Bay in good numbers, helped make the occasion one which will remain firm in the memory.
Following the formalities of the ritual 72 members and their guests enjoyed a splendid four course meal with the menu being beef.
Brian Benn receives the travelling keystone from Peter Schofield
Of course, these things do not just happen of their own accord. Special mention was made of the work of director of ceremonies David Smith and secretary Ray Dickinson in making the event such an enjoyable one. Both stepped down from their roles on the night with David stepping straight back into the firing line as he has replaced ray as secretary. Acknowledgement must also be made of the work of hall chairman and Jubilee member Russ Greenhow for overseeing the catering arrangements and acting as barman.
The lodge was founded in the year 1887 which was the year of the golden jubilee of Queen Victoria which I must presume is the reason for it being so titled. To put the age of the lodge in perspective in that same year Celtic F.C. was formed, work started on the Manchester Ship Canal and Glenfiddich single malt was first distilled so the choice of Jubilee was probably the best option!.
Keith with his backing ensemble “The Sultans of Bling”
And finally, did you know that Ulverston has had a major impact on modern music? Not only was Christine McVie of Fleetwood Mac fame born just outside the town, but a resident named Maude Green emigrated to the USA and gave birth to a son who later achieved fame as Bill Haley.
Words and pictures by